THIRD SECTION

DECISION

Application no. 28243/02 
by Cevdet OKAY and Others 
against the Netherlands

The European Court of Human Rights (Third Section), sitting on 26 January 2006 as a Chamber composed of:

Mr B.M. Zupančič, President
 Mr J. Hedigan
 Mr C. Bîrsan
 Mrs M. Tsatsa-Nikolovska
 Mr V. Zagrebelsky,

Mrs R. Jaeger
 Mr E. Myjer, judges
and Mr V. Berger, Section Registrar,

Having regard to the above application lodged on 26 July 2002,

Having regard to the observations submitted by the respondent Government and the observations in reply submitted by the applicants,

Having deliberated, decides as follows:

THE FACTS

The first and second applicants, Cevdet Okay and his wife Menice Okay, are Turkish nationals, who were born in 1961 and 1954 respectively and who are currently residing in Roelofarendsveen. The third to ninth applicants, Felek, Murat, Fatma, Zeynep, Esra, Zozan and Berivan Okay, are their children. They are represented before the Court by Mrs G.E.M. Later, a lawyer practising in The Hague.

The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.

The first applicant, his wife and their (then) five children left Turkey in 1989. They unsuccessfully applied for asylum in Germany. In 1994 the family moved to the Netherlands where they applied for asylum or, alternatively, a residence permit on humanitarian grounds. When informing the Dutch authorities of the account of and motives for their flight, they omitted to tell that they had spent time in Germany and made it seem as if events which had occurred in Turkey had taken place five years later than they actually had. On 31 August 1995 they obtained refugee status.

Not long after, the Dutch authorities found out about the family’s previous stay in Germany and, on 18 January 1996, their refugee status was withdrawn. Their objection against that decision was dismissed by the Deputy Minister of Justice (Staatssecretaris van Justitie) on 3 September 1997. In a final decision of 1 April 1998 the Regional Court (arrondissementsrechtbank) of The Hague rejected the applicants’ subsequent appeal.

The family lodged a new asylum application in the Netherlands on 7 May 1998. This was unsuccessful, with the final decision on the matter being taken by the Regional Court of The Hague on 8 May 2002.

Meanwhile, on 8 June 1998, the applicants requested the Deputy Minister of Justice to reconsider the decision on their first asylum application. In the course of the proceedings on this request the applicants argued that the medical situation of in particular the first applicant militated against expulsion and should lead to them being admitted to the Netherlands.

On 8 December 2005 the respondent Government informed the Court that the applicants had been granted a residence permit. In a letter of 21 December 2005, the applicants informed the Court that they wished to withdraw their application.

COMPLAINTS

The applicants originally complained that their expulsion from the Netherlands to Turkey would violate their rights as guaranteed by Articles 2 and 3 of the Convention and Protocol No. 6. Invoking Articles 3 and 8 of the Convention, they further complained of a lack of medical treatment of the first applicant which also affected the other applicants. Finally, they complained under Article 13 taken together with Articles 3 and 8 of the Convention that the second applicant was not heard on her second asylum application and that the children were not heard at all.

THE LAW

The applicants complained principally of the refusal to allow them to reside in the Netherlands.

The Court notes that the applicants have now been granted a residence permit and that they wish to withdraw the application. In these circumstances, and having regard to Article 37 § 1 (a) and (b) of the Convention, the Court is of the opinion that it is no longer justified to continue the examination of the case. Furthermore, in accordance with Article 37 § 1 in fine, the Court finds no special circumstances regarding respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols which require the examination of the application to be continued.

For these reasons, the Court unanimously

Decides to strike the application out of its list of cases.

Vincent Berger Boštjan M. Zupančič 
 Registrar President

OKAY AND OTHERS v. THE NETHERLANDS DECISION


OKAY AND OTHERS v. THE NETHERLANDS DECISION